Just over two months ago, the wrestling rumour mill went into overdrive when Dave Meltzer let the cat out of the bag that the Carter family were wanting out of the wrestling business due to a decade of heavy losses and that talks were at an advanced stage to sell TNA to a mystery buyer.
Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins was quickly tabbed as an interested party to purchase the flagging company, but it seems that he pulled out when he found out that he wasn't the frontrunner in the race to buy TNA.
Instead, as Dave Meltzer revealed in the Dec. 30th Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the mega rich country music legend Toby Keith was the money man behind the group that came close to finalising a deal with the Carters for TNA, which Jeff Jarrett helped to organise.
When that deal fell through, Jarrett immediately resigned from the company and instead it looks like TNA will continue to be ran by Dixie Carter and Panda Energy for the foreseeable future, just downsized to a level where the big money losses will be eliminated.
Now, the gossip is that Toby Keith and Jeff Jarrett will set up their own wrestling promotion in competition with TNA, despite Jarrett still owning a small share of TNA Wrestling.
Where the grappling hearsay went overboard on WrestlingInc.com into the land of crazy talk was with the latest rumour that Jim Ross was in negotiations with Toby Keith for a position in his new wrestling company, just because he recently had dinner with him.
Though stranger things have happened in the wrestling business, Good Ol' JR working side by side with Double J to run a wrestling promotion would be hard to fathom after the manner Jarrett left the WWF in 1999.
In a staggering oversight, Jarrett's WWF contract expired the day before the No Mercy pay-per-view whilst he was still the Intercontinental Champion, which allowed him to hold up the company for a large six figure sum before dropping the title on the show to Chyna and signing with WCW. The blame for this monumental cock-up fell on Ross's shoulders, probably rightly so. According to the coverage in the Pro Wrestling Torch at the time, Jarrett took advantage of his last night in the WWF to rip Ross a new asshole:
"Just hours before dropping the IC Title to Chyna at the PPV on Sunday, Jarrett confronted Ross and cut a promo on him in front of a number of other people, letting everyone know that he thought Ross sabotaged the company by letting him go just to kiss up to Austin. The tongue lashing was intense, probably a sign that Jarrett felt very frustrated in recent months when his scheduled program against Austin was vetoed by Austin only after he sold Austin's stunner three times on television as a set-up for their then-planned feud."
Basically the only motivation for Ross to get into bed with Jarrett in 2014 would be to stick it to Vince McMahon, given that he doesn't need the money or the stress of a high pressure job at his age.
But, don't take my word for it, here's what JR had to say about the idea in his latest blog update:
"Some websites are irresponsibly running with the story that just because Toby Keith and I are friends and fellow Okies who both follow the Sooners that I'm about to do business with Toby and Jeff Jarrett which isn't true. Toby and I had dinner at the Sugar Bowl, he's a wrestling fan from the old days and, a helluva entrepreneur with deep pockets. Nonetheless the reason that we were there was to support our Sooners vs. Alabama in the Sugar Bowl and not talk about pro wrestling.
We did talk the wrestling biz some but that's not unusual for me in any conversation after a 40 year career within the genre. We also talked country music, business investments, OU football and we spent the afternoon together with ESPN's Brad Nessler who's another wrestling fan. Yes, TNA came up a time or two but that was really a non issue in our conversations.
I am not motivated to re-engage in the wrestling business on a daily basis and it would take a mighty healthy offer to consider such. The politics and paranoia that go along with today's rasslin business isn't healthy for me to be around on a full time basis especially at this stage of my life.
Plus, I have a specific philosophy regarding how the business should be presented that doesn't seem to be in fashion these days.
My name has been linked to doing some voice overs for a couple of international Wresting promotions who air their product, including PPV's and DVD's in North America, but that's not something that we've pursued just yet. We'll see what the future holds on that one. Sounds interesting though."
There you have it Cagesiders from the horses mouth!